Knowledge, Explanation, and Motivating Reasons

Abstract
According to a number of recent philosophers, knowledge has an intimate relationship with rationality. Some philosophers hold, in particular, that rational agents do things for good motivating reasons, and that p can be one’s motivating reason for -ing (acting/believing/fearing/etc.) only if one knows that p. This paper argues against this view and in favor of the view that p cannot be one’s motivating reason for -ing—in the relevant sense—unless there is an appropriate explanatory connection between the fact that p and one’s -ing. I argue that this view offers a better account of the cases alleged to support the knowledge view.
Keywords knowledge  explanation  reasons  rationality  motivating reasons  normative reasons  factive reasons
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